EUSTIS — A Carrabassett Valley man is accused of trying to outrun police Thursday at speeds over 100 miles per hour, dumping cocaine out his car window and driving drunk on Route 16 between Oquossoc Village and Route 27 in Stratton Village.
A driver reported a suspicious incident pertaining to a man in a vehicle doing drugs and drugs being visible on the car seat near Bald Mountain Camps. Rangeley police received the initial call but could not locate the vehicle.
Franklin County Chief Deputy Steven Lowell was on Route 16 in Dallas Plantation looking for the green Subaru while heading toward Rangeley. He spotted the car coming in the opposite direction and turned around to follow it. He pulled it over after he noticed the driver was driving erratically and had thrown white power out the window, Lowell said. The powder turned out to be cocaine.
Initially the driver, Matthew Willihan, 34, complied but then took off in the vehicle and refused to stop.
When the car’s speed reached over 100 miles per hour, Lowell said, he terminated the chase and notified Maine State Police.
Trooper Andrew Hardy was near the Maine Department of Transportation site in Stratton when he spotted the car. It was still going 80 mph, Hardy said.
The car pulled into the parking lot of the White Wolf Inn on Route 27 in Stratton Village with Hardy behind it. Willihan tried to flee on foot but Hardy caught up to him quickly and subdued him, Hardy said.
A U.S. Border Patrol agent with a K-9 trained in drug detection, detected cocaine in the car.
There was cocaine residue throughout the car, Lowell said.
Hardy arrested Willihan, on behalf of state police and Franklin County Sheriff’s Office, on charges of refusing to submit to arrest or detention, two counts of eluding an officer, possession of schedule W drugs – cocaine, operating under the influence, criminal speed of 30-plus miles over speed limit, and falsifying physical evidence, Hardy said.
He also issued Willihan a summons on a charge of operating without a license because he has a prior OUI and had a license condition that prohibited him from having any alcohol in his system, Hardy said.
Willihan remained held on $5,000 cash bail at 12:30 p.m. Friday at the Franklin County Detention Center in Farmington. He was expected to go before a judge later in the day.